Network says move is a good first step, but BlackRock needs to now support climate-shareholder votes and move its investments out of the worst fossil fuel companies.
Today, BlackRock announced that it will be joining Climate Action 100+. In response to the decision, members of the BlackRock’s Big Problem network issued the following statements:
Eli Kasargod-Staub, Majority Action Executive Director:
“BlackRock is finally recognizing that its go-it-alone approach has been counterproductive. BlackRock’s voting last year significantly undermined Climate Action 100+ efforts, and CEO Larry Fink’s annual letter must specifically commit to using its voting power to hold directors accountable at corporations that fail to align themselves to the goal of holding warming to 1.5 degrees.”
Ben Cushing, Sierra Club Campaign Representative:
“It’s good to see BlackRock recognize the massive public pressure to take action on climate. We hope today’s announcement means that BlackRock will go beyond words and actually make meaningful changes to the way it wields its power as an investor to reflect the goals of Climate Action 100+. This is a good first step, but to truly be part of the solution to the climate crisis, BlackRock needs to put its money where its mouth is by supporting climate-related shareholder votes and by moving investments out of the worst actors in the fossil fuel industry.”
Moira Birss, Finance Campaign Director for Amazon Watch:
“Joining Climate Action 100+ is just a first step in the right direction for BlackRock; it must also respond to the fact that it is the world’s biggest investor in deforestation. The Amazon fires last fall and the wildfires in Australia today show the immense risk to the climate, forests, and indigenous peoples that deforestation-risk commodities pose. BlackRock must make its engagement with companies public and transparent with clear policies, deadlines, and ambitious timelines for shifting capital out of the worst offenders if they won’t change.”
BlackRock’s Big Problem is a global network of NGOs and social movements that are pushing asset managers like BlackRock to align their business practices with a climate-safe world. That means divesting from fossil fuel companies that won’t change their practices, prioritizing fossil and deforestation free funds, and more actively pushing companies they own to align their businesses with the goals of the Paris climate agreement.
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